war crimes in Ukraine

The Tribunal for Putin (T4P) global initiative was set up in response to the all-out war launched by Russia against Ukraine in February 2022.

Yury Verbytsky murder investigation concluded

The police have established the identity, although seemingly not the whereabouts, of two men whom they suspect of carrying out the abduction and torture of two EuroMaidan activists Ihor Lutsenko and Yury Verbytsky and murder of the latter

The Interior Ministry’s Central Investigation Department has announced that it has concluded its investigation into the abduction of EuroMaidan activists Ihor Lutsenko and Yury Verbytsky .  It believes that their abduction was organized by two men who acted with the full support of the former management of the Interior Ministry and Prosecutor General’s Office.  An indictment has been drawn up with respect to two men, and another 10 have been placed on the international wanted list.  The police have however refused to reveal any names. 

The charges are over the murder of Yury Verbytsky and the abduction and torture of both men.

Yury Verbytsky, a 51-year-old seismologist from Lviv was abducted from hospital during the early hours of Jan 21 by up to 10 men in plain clothes.  He had been taken to hospital by well-known journalist and EuroMaidan activist Ihor Lutsenko who was also abducted.  Their disappearance was reported immediately, with that of Lutsenko receiving most public attention given his prominence. 

It may have been this which saved his life.  Lutsenko was found on Jan 22, badly beaten but alive.  He recounted how the men had been taken to the forest, then into a shed and savagely beaten.  He also said then that Verbytsky had received worse treatment, probably because he was from Lviv in Western Ukraine.

On Jan 22 Lutsenko was in no doubt who was behind such abductions and beatings, saying that such treatment followed a standard pattern with people being interrogated and badly beaten outside the city and then taken to police stations.  He himself had been asked questions about Maidan, how decisions were taken, what plans there were and who was controlling the Right Sector.

Lutsenko believed that Verbytsky would be found in some police station.  Tragically this was not the case and his badly mutilated body was found in the forest on Jan 23.   

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